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The first Starbucks opened in Seattle, Washington, on March 31, 1971, by three partners who met while they were students at the University of San Francisco: English teacher Jerry Baldwin, history teacher Zev Siegl, and writer Gordon Bowker were inspired to sell high-quality coffee beans and equipment by coffee roasting entrepreneur Alfred Peet after he taught them his style of roasting beans. Bowker recalls that Terry Heckler, with whom Bowker owned an advertising agency, thought words beginning with "st" were powerful. The founders brainstormed a list of words beginning with "st", and eventually landed on "Starbo", a mining town in the Cascade Range. From there, the group remembered "Starbuck," the name of the chief mate in the book Moby-Dick.  Bowker said, "Moby-Dick didn't have anything to do with Starbucks directly; it was only coincidental that the sound seemed to make sense."
The first Starbucks store was located in Seattle at 2000 Western Avenue from 1971–1976. This cafe was later moved to 1912 Pike Place. During this time, the company only sold roasted whole coffee beans and did not yet brew coffee to sell. During their first year of operation, they purchased green coffee beans from Peet's, then began buying directly from growers.Template:Citation needed
Sale and expansionEdit
In 1984, the original owners of Starbucks, led by Jerry Baldwin, purchased Peet's. During the 1980s, total sales of coffee in the US were falling, but sales of specialty coffee increased, forming 10% of the market in 1989, compared with 3% in 1983. By 1986, the company operated six stores in Seattle and had only just begun to sell espresso coffee.
In 1987, the original owners sold the Starbucks chain to former manager Howard Schultz, who rebranded his Il Giornale coffee outlets as Starbucks and quickly began to expand. In the same year, Starbucks opened its first locations outside Seattle at Waterfront Station in Vancouver, British Columbia, and Chicago, Illinois. By 1989, 46 stores existed across the Northwest and Midwest, and annually Starbucks was roasting over Template:Convert of coffee.
At the time of its initial public offering (IPO) on the stock market in June 1992, Starbucks had 140 outlets, with a revenue of US$73.5 million, up from US$1.3 million in 1987. The company's market value was US$271 million by this time. The 12% portion of the company that was sold raised around US$25 million for the company, which facilitated a doubling of the number of stores over the next two years. By September 1992, Starbucks' share price had risen by 70% to over 100 times the earnings per share of the previous year.
In July 2013, over 10% of in-store purchases were made on customer's mobile devices using the Template:Vanchor. The company once again utilized the mobile platform when it launched the "Tweet-a-Coffee" promotion in October 2013. On this occasion, the promotion also involved Twitter and customers were able to purchase a US$5 gift card for a friend by entering both "@tweetacoffee" and the friend's handle in a tweet. Research firm Keyhole monitored the progress of the campaign and a December 6, 2013, media article reported that the firm had found that 27,000 people had participated and US$180,000 of purchases were made to date. As of 2018, Starbucks is ranked 132nd on the Fortune 500 list of the largest United States corporations by revenue.
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Expansion to new markets and productsEdit
Template:Missing information The first Starbucks location outside North America opened in Tokyo, Japan, in 1996. On December 4, 1997, the Philippines became the third market to open outside North America with its first branch in the country located at 6750 Ayala Building in Makati City, Philippines. Starbucks entered the U.K. market in 1998 with the $83 million USD acquisition of the then 56-outlet, UK-based Seattle Coffee Company, re-branding all the stores as Starbucks.
In 1999, Starbucks experimented with eateries in the San Francisco Bay area through a restaurant chain called Circadia. These restaurants were soon "outed" as Starbucks establishments and converted to Starbucks cafes.
In October 2002, Starbucks established a coffee trading company in Lausanne, Switzerland to handle purchases of green coffee. All other coffee-related business continued to be managed from Seattle.
In April 2003, Starbucks completed the purchase of Seattle's Best Coffee and Torrefazione Italia from AFC Enterprises for $72m. The deal only gained 150 stores for Starbucks, but according to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, the wholesale business was more significant. In September 2006, rival Diedrich Coffee announced that it would sell most of its company-owned retail stores to Starbucks. This sale included the company-owned locations of the Oregon-based Coffee People chain. Starbucks converted the Diedrich Coffee and Coffee People locations to Starbucks, although the Portland International Airport Coffee People locations were excluded from the sale.
In 2007, the company opened its first store in Russia, ten years after first registering a trademark there.
In 2008, they purchased the manufacturer of the Clover Brewing System. They began testing the "fresh-pressed" coffee system at several Starbucks locations in Seattle, California, New York, and Boston.
In early 2008, Starbucks started a community website, My Starbucks Idea, designed to collect suggestions and feedback from customers. Other users comment and vote on suggestions. Journalist Jack Schofield noted that "My Starbucks seems to be all sweetness and light at the moment, which I don't think is possible without quite a lot of censorship". The website is powered by Salesforce.com software.
In May 2008, a loyalty program was introduced for registered users of the Starbucks Card (previously simply a gift card) offering perks such as free Wi-Fi Internet access, no charge for soy milk and flavored syrups, and free refills on brewed drip coffee, iced coffee, or tea. In 2009, Starbucks began beta testing its mobile app for the Starbucks card, a stored value system in which consumers access pre-paid funds to purchase products at Starbucks. Starbucks released its complete mobile platform on January 11, 2011.
On February 1, 2013, Starbucks opened its first store in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and this was followed by an announcement in late August 2013 that the retailer will be opening its inaugural store in Colombia. The Colombian announcement was delivered at a press conference in Bogota, where the company's CEO explained, "Starbucks has always admired and respected Colombia's distinguished coffee tradition."
In September 2014, it was revealed that Starbucks would acquire the remaining 60.5 percent stake in Starbuck Coffee Japan that it does not already own, at a price of $913.5 million.
In August 2015, Starbucks announced that it will enter Cambodia, its 16th market in the China/Asia Pacific region. The first location will open in the capital city of Phnom Penh by the end of 2015.
In February 2016, Starbucks announced that it will enter Italy, its 24th market in Europe. The first location will open in Milan by 2018. In August, startup company FluxPort introduced Qi inductive charging pads at select locations in Germany.
In September 2016, Starbucks announced a debut of its first-ever original content series called "Upstanders" which aims to inspire Americans with stories of compassion, citizenship, and civility. The series features podcasts, written word, and video, and will be distributed via the Starbucks mobile app, online, and through the company's in-store digital network.
On July 27, 2017, Starbucks acquired the remaining 50% stake in their Chinese venture from long-term joint venture partners Uni-President Enterprises Corporation (UPEC) and President Chain Store Corporation (PCSC).
On March 21, 2018, Starbucks announced that it is considering the use of blockchain technology with an idea to connect coffee drinkers with coffee farmers who eventually can take advantage of new financial opportunities. The pilot program is going to start with farmers in Costa Rica, Colombia and Rwanda in order to develop a new way to track the bean to cup journey.
On June 19, 2018, Starbucks announced the closing of 150 locations in 2019, this is three times the number the corporation typically closes in a single year. The closings will happen in urban areas that already have dense clusters of stores.
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